Transportation Canada, the government agency responsible for overseeing highway and vehicle safety, has opened an investigation into 250,000 GM pickups and SUVs over reports of faulty brakes.
The news of Canada’s investigation in GM vehicles follows a similar investigation opened by the National Highway and Transportation Safety Agency (NHTSA) in the United States over the same issue of poor brake performance. According to Reuters, the NHTSA has received 487 reports that state various 2014 to 2016 model year vehicles are not braking nearly as well as they should.
For the NHTSA probe, 2.73 million trucks and SUVs are being scrutinized. In Canada, that number is just under 250,000 but extends to 2014 and 2017 model year trucks and SUVs. Those models include 2015 to 2016 model year Cadillac Escalades, Chevrolet Suburbans, Chevrolet Tahoes, and GMC Yukons, as well as 2014 to 2017 model year Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra 1500s.
Reports indicate that these vehicles brakes could suffer from poor performance, requiring the driver to jam the brake pedal to even slightly reduce forward momentum. According to the report, the faulty brakes have been "attributed to deterioration of the engine-driven brake assist vacuum pump,” which can reduce brake power assist and significantly increase stopping distance.
The NHTSA is aware of 9 accidents resulting in collisions with either vehicles or stationary objects, as well as 2 injuries.
A request for additional info was sent to General Motors from the NHTSA on February 7th, but so far there has been no update from the agency. A GM spokesperson refused to comment to Reuters.
This latest investigation comes hot on the heels of a large recall issued in May for 325,000 GM medium-duty pickups, including recent year Silverado 2500 and Sierra 2500 HD trucks.
At issue was an engine block heater that could catch fire. A total of 19 trucks were reported to have burned to cinders, which isn't exactly a great look for a big pickup. If you own a medium-duty GM pickup with a block heater, contact your dealer for a free fix.